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#1023191 - 02/29/20 11:24 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET *** [Re: eyeFISH]
Rivrguy Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 4399
Loc: Somewhere on the planet,I hope
Ok the preseason Willapa next but this one is rather complex as Willapa is on the aggregate. Keep in mind these are numbers before ocean harvest.

Chinook:
Escapenet Goal: W 4350 H 3525 Forecast: W 2914 H 28271

Coho:
Escapement Goal: W 13600 H 6100 Forecast: W 17850 H 51785

Chum:
Escapement Goal: 35400 Forecast: W 38845 H 959

In looking at the numbers it is best to break out Willapa into North & South ares. So North ( which is Willapa River / Forks Cr hatchery ) Chinook are W 1973 H 1845. In a nutshell the Tokeland based fisheries will be very limited.

Now the Southern end of the bay will have W 941 H 26426 and the wild escapement required is 2377. This means prior to harvest the run forecast 40% of needs. Not Good!

North looks poor but not superbad. Now down South Nemah is not a Coho player but Naselle is something different. Escapement Goal Naselle / Bear is W 1500 supporting H 42479 and that does not compute for harvest.




Edited by Rivrguy (02/29/20 11:27 AM)
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#1023211 - 02/29/20 05:26 PM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
DrifterWA Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 04/25/00
Posts: 4978
Loc: East of Aberdeen, West of Mont...

I actually posted this in the 2020 forecast thread....but it works here also


Bob R:

Poor Ron Warren, he didn't know whether to "xhit or go blind"....he was actual lost for words....he'd have been better to just stay in the back of the room, and just not say anything then to come up to the front of the group and "then not really say anything, and looked dumb doing that."

Monty meeting was well attended, 2 WDFW LE there, must have expected problems, guides showed up, lots of WDFW personnel.

Pretty much another in a long line of "dog and pony shows" relative to salmon. Might be some chinook up for harvest but with the amount of people that would decend on the Chehalis, impacts would be gone IN NO TIME. I'd rather have a long Coho season, and jacks, than worry about "WDFW, quick finger on closures, shut the whole Chehalis system early.

It was nice that WDFW allowed time "for steelhead talk"....normally at these meetings, if a person mentions steelhead, sturgeon, or other fish.....they are shut off...and in no uncertain terms told.."this is about salmon"..

No spring chinook, again.....I remember Ron Warren saying at a meeting, many years ago, there will NEVER be any hatchery raised spring chinook in the Chehalis system....so far that is true........grrrrrr
_________________________
"Worse day sport fishing, still better than the best day working"

"I thought growing older, would take longer"

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#1023324 - 03/02/20 08:56 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: DrifterWA]
Rivrguy Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 4399
Loc: Somewhere on the planet,I hope

I received an email from Mr. Losee regarding the GH & Willapa Preseason Forecast meeting in Montesano. At that meeting he allowed discussion on Steelhead issues in the Chehalis and Willapa. In the follow up email he provided the following input he had received prior to the meeting ( he identified mostly from guides ) so I thought I would post them up for folks to see.

Now before someone blows a gasket let me say this. I have no idea on why he could take such a proactive approach on Grays Harbor and walk out of the meeting knowing and not sharing that he was shutting down Steelhead fishing in the Willapa streams. I am clueless!

Idea: Leave the Chehalis open from Skookumchuck down to Galvin RD Bridge for the opportunity to catch Skookumchuck hatchery fish.

This proposal is to target late-timed, hatchery origin steelhead returning to Skookumchuck hatchery. However, impacts to wild steelhead will occur given that 33% of the total Chehalis wild escapement occurs upstream of this section. In addition, given the size of this section of river (~1.5 miles) crowding and higher than expected encounters are likely to occur. Additionally, counts of hatchery steelhead have declined during the past three weeks; from 363 hatchery steelhead on Feb. 5 to 76 hatchery steelhead on Feb. 19 consistent with previous years.



Idea: Open a portion of the Skookumchuck - from dam down a couple miles.

See response to previous question.



Idea: Open all or a portion of the Wynoochee (some say all of it, some say up to 7400 line, some say from the dam down).

This proposal is to target late-time, hatchery origin steelhead returning to Wynoochee River. However, impacts to wild steelhead will occur given that 17% of the total Chehalis natural escapement occurs in the Wynoochee River. Average catch record card harvest information from 2001 to 2017 in Wynoochee River shows a 66% drop in catch from February to March. The limited benefit of this proposal to encounter hatchery origin fish is outweighed by the high likelihood of high exploitation on natural origin fish.



Idea: Open a portion of the Satsop, restrict use of bait – open mainstem and section near the hatchery on the East fork. Keep middle and West fork closed.

The Satsop River represents important spawning habitat for wild steelhead representing greater than 25% of the spawning population in the Chehalis watershed.



Idea: Close Turnow Branch.

West fork closed Nov 30th annually.

Idea: Close Nawaukum.

West fork closed Nov 30th annually.

Idea: Close Wishkah

Closes last day of Feb annually.

Idea: Look at redd surveys to see where higher volume of spawners are, in order to assess high-risk areas

See Figures 1. Wild steelhead are distributed broadly throughout the basin with highest density spawning overlapping with areas of interest for anglers.



Idea: Look at regulations changes to lower exploitation rates (select gear, bait restrictions, single barbless hooks, one hatchery fish limit, mandatory retention, etc.)

Suggestions below represent viable options for rivers outside the Chehalis Basin considered for changes in 2020 to reduce exploitation associated with shift in effort from Chehalis. Within the Chehalis, opening rivers with changes to gear or harvest regulation will not result in meeting conservation objectives given high certainty of encounters with wild fish under all options described below. These options also require changes to modeling and assumptions to agreed- to pre-season plans and should be revisited prior to planning of seasons in the future. These assumptions include mortality rates associated with different gear types, encounter rates on hatchery vs. natural origin steelhead and behavior of anglers under variable regulations.



Idea: Open limited sections of rivers on limited days (i.e. Thursday, Friday and Saturdays only). If you do this make sure one of the days is a weekend day

This suggestion was considered given the ability to extend seasons and spread angler effort throughout the coast. WDFW also recognizes the benefit in limiting the disproportionate impact on the early end of the run by extending seasons throughout the run using daily closures. In contrast, modeled savings and associated effort shift from closed days to open days is extremely uncertain.



Idea: If these options can’t provide some level of opportunity within the Chehalis basin, consider closing other systems where increased pressure will result in us exceeding exploitation rates and not meeting escapement (i.e. the Humptulips and the Hoh). BUT, if considering closures to the Humptulips, Hoh or Clearwater due to increased pressure due to Chehalis closure – make sure there’s data on angler pressure to support it. Don’t rely on anecdotes but real numbers.

Options below were considered by estimating the associated savings (exploitation on wild steelhead) by reducing the length of seasons to coastal rivers (outside Chehalis) . For instance, a modeled closure of all Region 6 rivers on March 1 would lead to a reduction in pre-season modeled exploitation rate of 39 to 49% depending on river-specific schedules listed in pamphlet. Similarly, a March 15th closure is expected to result in a reduction in exploitation rate of 21 to 33% depending on the river. These results were based on known run-timing and exploitation rates throughout the season.



In addition, data on effort in 2020 following closure relative to recent years is limited however given the small margin or error between meeting pre-season plans and escapement goals vs. failing to meet goals (Figure 2), WDFW is comfortable with the assumption that some increased effort is likely to occur as a result of closures. This assumption is also supported through discussions with the public, theguide community and creel monitoring.



Other points/ questions on long-term management

The group would like to see tributary data. Figure 1, summary table available upon request.
The group would like to how we are considering changing our management approach in order to make sure moving forward we aren’t under escapement. This work has highlighted weaknesses in our current management approaches that should be discussed prior to 2021.
The group would like to know what the agency’s strategy is for improving our relationship with the co-managers so we have better in-season data. This year, weekly technical calls, exchanging data and discussing in-season tools with Quillayute and Hoh for in-season check-ins has been beneficial. This would be a strategy worth exploring for Chehalis and Quinault tribes. We welcome future discussion on this topic.
The group would like to see more funding to help with creel monitoring and spawner surveys in R6, especially focused on steelhead. While additional creel work would strengthen understanding of effort and encounter rates, it would likely not provide high resolution information on run-size to alter pre-season management approach in-season. This year on the Hoh River we are experimenting with using weekly redd counts to inform runsize predictions. However, the peak of steelhead spawning (when data is most informative) occurs after the majority of sport fisheries have already taken place. Alternatively, we could explore more conservative management plans pre-season to insure escapement goals are met or exceeded given forecast uncertainty.
The group would like to see us consider a different management approach than MSY so we have a stronger conservation buffer.
We currently do not manage for maximum sustainable yield (MSY) per se but rather try to maximize the number of adults (runsize) that return to fisheries through efforts to meet escapement goals. Unfortunately forecast accuracy, variable survival rates and variable bycatch while targeting hatchery origin fish has lead to poor performance in meeting escapement goal for Chehalis in recent years.

Additionally, an agreed upon conservation buffer for state and tribal fisheries is an option that may benefit steelhead and associated fisheries in long term.

In summary, we are supportive of a more conservative management approach given long term trends in runsize for majority of populations in Region 6 (Figure 3) combined with improved forecast methodologies.
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#1023328 - 03/02/20 09:29 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
Salmo g. Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/08/99
Posts: 13396
Given that wild steelhead release has become the statewide normative regulation for quite a few years now, it's puzzling that steelhead seasons should need to be closed unless the pre-season abundance forecasts are far below desired spawning escapement goals. A minor fishing regulation change to Selective Rules of single barbless hook and artificial lures only limits harm to the fish encountered, and with the conservative incidental mortality rate of 10% that the state and federal fishery agencies use, it would take an incredibly high encounter rate to measurably reduce spawning escapements enough to affect subsequent adult steelhead population abundance.

The Skagit River is a well documented example where CNR fishing seasons have been practiced since 1981. Runsizes have been good, and there have been poor ones as well. And through it all, the recreational CNR seasons have had zero measurable effect on population abundance. That's about as good a testament to a successful management strategy as is possible.

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#1023340 - 03/02/20 11:01 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
Lifter99 Offline
Returning Adult

Registered: 12/01/18
Posts: 384
Salmo, I offered the selective gear strategy a couple of weeks ago on the "Rumor' thread. Given the preseason forecast of a low run of wild steelhead in the Chehalis system, WDFW could have implemented selective gear rules at the start of the season. The impact on wild fish would have minimal like you said. I don't think many steelhead fishermen would have had a problem with a selective gear season. Many fishermen I know don't use bait anymore anyway.

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#1023367 - 03/02/20 01:54 PM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: Lifter99]
Rivrguy Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 4399
Loc: Somewhere on the planet,I hope

Here is the link for GH & Willapa NOF presentations for those that did not make the meeting.

https://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/management/north-falcon/public-meetings
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#1023381 - 03/02/20 03:12 PM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
WDFW X 1 = 0 Offline
My Area code makes me cooler than you

Registered: 01/27/15
Posts: 4481
Heard next year they are looking at shutting down the basin on Jan 15th?????

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#1023578 - 03/04/20 12:12 PM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
Krijack Offline
Three Time Spawner

Registered: 06/03/06
Posts: 1515
Loc: Tacoma
The way things are, they probably will shut it down from top to bottom of the 1st of February, the same day the tribe would stop netting the lower river. I would be shocked to see them close it as early as the 15th of December, as most of the hatchery fish would not be by the nets. Give the tribes to the 10th of February and and they will have had the opportunity to net probably 90% of the hatchery run, while the recs get a fair chance at about 50% or less. The 2016 catch records show this for return cards for the Skookumchuck.
Skookumchuck reported catch 2016
December --29 January -- 125, February ---- 383, March ---1,033
This means about 52% of the skookumchuck's fish are caught in March. It definitely would not be too late to open it up for top end.

For the entire system, about 61% of the reported winter fish were caught after February first, so a January 15th closure would probably knock it down to 30% or less of the normal catch, possibly more if rains don't bring in some early.

Those are just from the 2016 cards. I do not have time to look at a bunch of years, but it appears to be consistent to what I have seen over the years.

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#1024147 - 03/08/20 05:36 PM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
Krijack Offline
Three Time Spawner

Registered: 06/03/06
Posts: 1515
Loc: Tacoma
Again, anyone else want to call baloney.

"Idea: Leave the Chehalis open from Skookumchuck down to Galvin RD Bridge for the opportunity to catch Skookumchuck hatchery fish.

This proposal is to target late-timed, hatchery origin steelhead returning to Skookumchuck hatchery. However, impacts to wild steelhead will occur given that 33% of the total Chehalis wild escapement occurs upstream of this section. In addition, given the size of this section of river (~1.5 miles) crowding and higher than expected encounters are likely to occur. Additionally, counts of hatchery steelhead have declined during the past three weeks; from 363 hatchery steelhead on Feb. 5 to 76 hatchery steelhead on Feb. 19 consistent with previous years."

If I reading this correctly, he is stating that the number of returns are falling and most are through the system and this is part of the reason they are not opening up the fishery. I would guess the hatchery is not recycling fish, so how does he explain that 310 fish (about 27%) to the Skookumchuck Hatchery in the last week ( February 27th to March 5th).

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#1024151 - 03/08/20 06:16 PM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: Krijack]
Rivrguy Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 4399
Loc: Somewhere on the planet,I hope

Quote:
I received an email from Mr. Losee regarding the GH & Willapa Preseason Forecast meeting in Montesano. At that meeting he allowed discussion on Steelhead issues in the Chehalis and Willapa. In the follow up email he provided the following input he had received prior to the meeting ( he identified mostly from guides ) so I thought I would post them up for folks to see.


Ah, the suggestions came from the public and Mr. Losee just shared them.


Edited by Rivrguy (03/08/20 06:18 PM)
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#1024164 - 03/08/20 07:22 PM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
Krijack Offline
Three Time Spawner

Registered: 06/03/06
Posts: 1515
Loc: Tacoma
It would sound to me like he got the proposal to open the river and was providing a response. I suppose it could be that the department was asking for responses to a proposal. If that is the case, it still is not based on fact. If there was a proposal put forth, I most certainly did not see it.
Seems odd some one would put forth a proposal and then shoot it down, so if I am a bit confused as to where the idea and response are coming from. Do you have any more information?

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#1024202 - 03/08/20 10:46 PM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: Krijack]
Rivrguy Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 4399
Loc: Somewhere on the planet,I hope

None of the proposals were from the staff but public. I think the thing your hung on is simply them looking at pluses & minuses of the ideas folks put forth. Your reading way more into than one should. It is more like brainstorming notes.
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#1024217 - 03/09/20 07:26 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 7440
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
Part of developing any regs is a back and forth review. Somebody (public, staff) says "why not...?" . Somebody reviews that and gives comment after which it can go back and forth until a workable solution comes out. If, in this case for example, you think WDFW is wrong and there are hatchery fish available (as the CRC's suggest) then contacting Mr. Losee with the data and working together might accomplish something. Yelling here generally doesn't change their minds.

It should be really easy to look at Skookumchuck monthly catch back into the dawn of hatchery production and before. It could be compared with plants two years before. An hour or two should be all it would take.

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#1024224 - 03/09/20 08:26 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
DrifterWA Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 04/25/00
Posts: 4978
Loc: East of Aberdeen, West of Mont...

wdfw needs to change the way any input is taken from the public......Some of us(public), wanted to sit down with Region 6 staff to "talk" about problem on the Wynoochee River, not mitigation related. Emails went back and forth, bottom line, nothing got done.

There were people that had fish steelhead, winter and summer, for 50+ years. I've been told that "Olympia makes the decisions" on steelhead.

Quick example.....Plants of steelhead have not changed in many years.....grrrr to the new web site, plants on steelhead only show since 2016, but in general Wynoochee winter run plants have been around 170,000 and summer run around 60,000. Those were good numbers in the late 60's - 2001, but many of those years there was no QIN netting of steelhead AND THE TOTAL NUMBER OF SPORTSMEN WAS NOT THAT MANY.

I've fish summer run since the late 70's, there would be weeks when I would see less than 5 people in a morning of fishing, from tide water to White Bridge. Winter steelheading has/is terrible.........to many people, to many boats, beating on a resouce that has not been increased by additional plants.

Parking areas have not changed since I've been here, 1968, the current parking is terrible. Black Creek is the worse but White Bridge could be increased in size....Cross over, not a WDFW site, just get worse.

Yea, I understand money, money, money but planning has not kept up with the general population growth......and in general it is almost in possible to "get a sit down meeting" to talk what the general public sees as problem areas for steelhead......... NOT SO FOR SALMON, LOTS OF MEETINGS AND INPUT ALLOWED...grrrrrrrr
_________________________
"Worse day sport fishing, still better than the best day working"

"I thought growing older, would take longer"

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#1024256 - 03/09/20 10:41 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
Lifter99 Offline
Returning Adult

Registered: 12/01/18
Posts: 384
It is interesting that WDFW does not put more emphasis on steelhead. It is a very economically important fish. Guys put a lot of money into going steelheading. Gas,boats, engines, tackle, food, lodging etc.. I know guys that would rather catch one steelhead to ten salmon. BTW it is the state fish.

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#1024264 - 03/09/20 11:26 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 7440
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
Salmon are all that matters too WDFW. Steelhead are a nuisance, as are steelheaders.

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#1024332 - 03/09/20 05:51 PM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
Lifter99 Offline
Returning Adult

Registered: 12/01/18
Posts: 384
Too bad CM. I think WDFW is a big nuisance to steelheaders.

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#1024362 - 03/10/20 09:08 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: Carcassman]
DrifterWA Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 04/25/00
Posts: 4978
Loc: East of Aberdeen, West of Mont...
Originally Posted By: Carcassman
Salmon are all that matters too WDFW. Steelhead are a nuisance, as are steelheaders.



I agree.......Its tough in Region 6 to get a "sit down meeting on steelhead" or even to get emails answered.
_________________________
"Worse day sport fishing, still better than the best day working"

"I thought growing older, would take longer"

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#1024379 - 03/10/20 11:14 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: eyeFISH]
Carcassman Offline
River Nutrients

Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 7440
Loc: Olema,California,Planet Earth
At merger, WDW brought, I believe, 14 bios who were full-time dedicated steelhead/cutthroat bios. How many are there now?

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#1024393 - 03/10/20 11:46 AM Re: FISHINGTHECHEHALIS.NET [Re: Carcassman]
RUNnGUN Offline
Repeat Spawner

Registered: 12/06/07
Posts: 1358
Originally Posted By: Carcassman
Salmon are all that matters too WDFW. Steelhead are a nuisance, as are steelheaders.


Why?
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"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” – Ferris Bueller.
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